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Some people own certain “energy crystals” for specific “energies” they want, such as a motivation or self-love crystal. Is owning one of these considered avoda zara, witchcraft, etc.?

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Avodah Zarah is servitude to anyone other than God in a Godlike manner. Using Stones and other items to get energy is forsure not serving these items as a God. Although it can borderline on it, if the intention is to rely on the item so strongly that there is a servitude type of attitude.

Mishnah and Gemarah Shabbat 67a:

יוֹצְאִין בְּבֵיצַת הַחַרְגּוֹל, וּבְשֵׁן שׁוּעָל, וּבְמַסְמֵר מִן הַצָּלוּב, מִשּׁוּם רְפוּאָה, דִּבְרֵי רַבִּי מֵאִיר. וַחֲכָמִים אוֹמְרִים, אַף בְּחֹל אָסוּר, מִשּׁוּם דַּרְכֵי הָאֱמוֹרִי:

One may go out on Shabbat with a locust egg (for healing of the ear - Rashi), and with a fox tooth (to help with sleep or to help being awake - Rashi), and with a nail from the crucified (for an infection - Rashi), for the purpose of healing; this is the statement of Rabbi Meir. The Rabbis prohibit using these remedies even during the week, due to the prohibition of following the ways of the Amorite.

The first note is that these stones or crystals would be דרכי אמורי and it would go against the command in Vayikra 18; ובחוקותיהם לא תלכו - Their ways you shall not follow. it was never presumed to be Avodah Zarah.

Secondly, there is a distinction in the Gemarah that it would be permitted if there is a "healing benefit".

How you define Refuah/Healing is another discussion but, some of the uses that you mentioned can fall into that category.

The Rambam adds that if :

וְהוּא שֶׁיֹּאמְרוּ הָרוֹפְאִים שֶׁהוּא מוֹעִיל, that if doctors say it will help than it can be considered healing and permitted.

The Rashba Says: ואפשר דאפילו לחשים שאין אנו יודעין אם יש בהן משום רפואה אם לאו מן הספק מותרין, ולא אסרו אלא אותן שהן בדוקין ודבר ברור שאין בו משום רפואה -

We can apply these items of "healing" even if we are unsure if they would heal or not, the only time it is not permitted is if it's clear that it does not heal.

The Rosh Says: כשעשה מעשה ואינו ניכר שיהיה בו רפואה, it would not be permitted if he did a act, and it's not recognizable that it is done for healing. (This is the Tur/Shulchan Aruch's approach as well). It does not seem like the Rambam Agrees as he makes no mention of it.

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  • "if it's clear that it does not heal" but that's always the case nowadays...
    – Double AA
    Feb 22 at 0:19
  • The problem is, the term Doctor is unclear. Anybody in the mental health industry might be more inclined to say that it does heal. Although Doctor's of the "Regular Body", as you said would probably not even consider it. Feb 22 at 6:41
  • I didn't say anything about doctors, only that it is abundantly clear they don't heal.
    – Double AA
    Feb 22 at 14:09
  • @doubleaa how do you know for sure
    – bluejayke
    Feb 22 at 19:05
  • @bluejayke Same way you know tugging on your left earlobe at midnight won't make your stock prices go up: no evidence of success and no reasonable proposed mechanism of action.
    – Double AA
    Feb 22 at 19:09

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